Gerald Casale and Mark Mothersbaugh founded the rock band Devo after being deeply affected by the 1970 shooting of four students at their college, Kent State University.
∙ Devo is short for “de-evolution,” the philosophy that drove the band’s music and visuals, which is based on the idea that “mankind has actually regressed.”
∙ Their pioneering music video The Truth About De-Evolution won first prize at the 1977 Ann Arbor Film Festival.
∙ Early Devo champion David Bowie paid for and contributed to their Brian Eno-produced debut, 1978’s Q: Are We Not Men? A: We Are Devo!.
∙ In 1980, Devo had a Top 20 hit with “Whip It,” a quirky song with lyrics that Gerald Casale envisioned as a parody of self-empowering pep talks.
∙ The group’s signature red “energy dome” helmets were inspired by the shape of Aztec temples and the Bauhaus approach to design.
∙ Mothersbaugh has composed music for dozens of films and TV shows, including Pee-wee’s Playhouse, Bottle Rocket, and What We Do in the Shadows.